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Volunteer Overseas

Gap Years

Volunteers on a gap year posing in a tree on a day off in Senegal

Gap years can be taken at any stage of your life – before, during or after your university studies; as a career-break or even in retirement! You don’t even need to take an entire year off – gap “months” can be just as fulfilling. The ultimate goal is a year out - with purpose.

Here at Projects Abroad, we’ve been helping volunteers organise their gap years for over 20 years. With our wealth of experience, we can provide a handy starting point and guide you as you plan an exciting year which combines travel and volunteering.

Why take a gap year?

There are a number of reasons to decide on a gap year.

  • It provides a welcome break for students from the rigours of studying, or professionals from their working life.
  • It’s an excellent way to develop soft skills, such as teamwork, communication, and overall people/life skills.
  • Gap years can be a time of personal growth, broadening your horizons and leaving you with boosted confidence, maturity and insight.
  • You have the chance to learn new skills and acquire valuable work experience.
  • A gap year can make you more employable and boost your UCAS application if you’re a student.
  • It’s a way to experience something completely different, whether it’s a new culture, destination or working environment.

What can I do on my gap year?

There are plenty of options when it comes to deciding what to do on a gap year – it just depends on what you want to get out of it. Volunteering, travelling, taking a short course, finding a part-time job or becoming an intern are all viable options. Depending on the amount of time you have available, you can even do a combination.

As we’ve spent many years helping volunteers plan their gap years, we’ve assembled a range of different resources that will help you get started:

Useful links

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